Whatever crimes the Brotherhood has committed against the people and against the Copts in defence of its power in the name of religion, we do not give army chief Al-Sisi our authority. We will not go into the streets on Friday offering a blank cheque to commit massacres.
If Al-Sisi has the legal means to do what he wants, why is he calling people into the streets? What he wants is a popular referendum on assuming the role of Caesar and the law will not deter him.
Yes, the Brotherhood caused the masses to suffer during the period of their rule, and today we see the return of terrorist acts in Sinai, Al-Arish, and attacks against the people living in Maniyal and al-Nahda.
Yet the army does not need “permission” to deal with terrorist acts, it has the legal means to do that and more. But it does want more, it wants a popular mobilisation behind it in order to increase the cohesion of the state and the ruling class behind its leadership.
It wants to wipe out one of the most important features of the revolution so far, which is the masses’ consciousness of the repressive role of the state apparatus and its intense hostility to towards them. It wants to make true the lie that “the army, the police and the people are one hand.” The army wants the people to follow it into the streets, just a year after the masses were screaming “down, down with military rule”.
They want finally to restore “stability” – that is to say the return of order, the return of the regime. They want to finish off the revolution, and they will use the Brotherhood to do it. The Brotherhood in only one year of office alienated everyone: the old state, its army and police; the ruling class; the working class and the poor; the Copts; the revolutionary and political parties. The fall of the Brotherhood was inevitable, and people were celebrating the downfall of Morsi even before they went into the streets on 30 June.
The military establishment, which had allied itself with the Islamists over the previous two years, decided to break this alliance after the Islamists failed to contain the social mobilisation and rising anger in the streets. So it seized the opportunity to get rid of Morsi and cut off the development of a revolutionary movement and prevent it deepening.
They want tolead this movement in a “safer” direction by getting rid of the Brotherhood to restore the old order. This strategy has seen the old regime’s cronies, police and army being cleared in the courts, while their crimes are added to the charge sheet against the Brotherhood.
On top of this, they claim that they were responsible for the 25 January Revolution as well. We do not want to find Morsi on trial for the murder of the martyrs of Port Said, and others. It was Mubarak/Morsi’s police which was responsible. The most important thing is to open the door which was closed with Morsi’s agreement: justice for the martyrs.
The crimes that Morsi committed, he committed with the military, the police and Mubarak’s state. They should all be tried together. Giving the old state a mandate for its repressive institutions to do what they want to their partners-in-crime of yesterday will only give them a free hand to repress all opposition thereafter.
They will repress all protest movements, workers’ strikes, sit-ins and demonstrations. We cannot forget that the crimes which the Brotherhood committed around the country, took place under the noses of the police and army without them intervening at all to protect protesters or the people.
The masses going into the street on Friday is damaging to the revolution, whatever the participants in the protests might think.
Giving the army a popular mandate to finish off the Muslim Brotherhood will inevitably lead to the consolidation of the regime which the revolution arose to overthrow. We must use the downfall of the Brotherhood to deepen the revolution, not to support the regime.
We have to deal with the Brotherhood at a popular and political level, responding to their acts of violence with the utmost firmness.
We must build popular committees to defend ourselves against attacks by the Brotherhood and to protect our revolution which will not subside before it overthrows the regime, and before it wins bread, freedom and social justice, and retribution for all the killers of the martyrs.